As the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) prepares for its national convention, the United Kingdom (UK) chapter has advised the National Executive Council (NEC) to postpone it.
It advised that the party should consolidate on the successes of Governor Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC), and win more grounds in reconciling aggrieved members.
APC had fixed its national convention for 26th February 2022, after several efforts to unite various factions across state chapters.
But Dr Philip Idaewor, Chairman of the APC in the United Kingdom, in a press statement on Tuesday, asked the NEC to shift the national convention to a later date.
The chapter urged APC’s National Executive Committee (NEC) to immediately postpone the National Convention from the Saturday, February 26 date for pending critical issues to be addressed, especially now that the reconciliation committee, led by Senator Abdullahi Adamu, has requested a one-week extension to complete its work”, the statement reads in part.
It said the UK chapter had earlier weighed in on the matter some months ago, where it categorically urged the party to align with best practices in deciding the date, which should be scheduled with the convention to elect the party’s presidential flag bearer.
According to the statement, the proposal would ensure the highest participation of the members in the diaspora as they would not dissipate logistics for travelling to Nigeria twice for the same event.
It called on the party’s NEC to summon the courage and postpone the convention in the overall interest of all stakeholders to promote unity, harmony and cohesion within the party. It noted that rushing into a convention within the space of the next three weeks would only further fracture the party.
According to the diaspora APC group, “reports from home (Nigeria) about how the APC has multiple factions in many of its state chapters do not project confidence that the party would have a smooth sail in the General Elections due next year. The logical thing is to allow the reconciliation committee to finish its assignment as there is no gain in progressing error”.
It expressed worry that “APC stakeholders would have simply slaved for others to enjoy if the party holds the convention in February as it will merely be solidifying the rancorous situation that is present at state levels”.
It said the APC UK is aware that such state-level acrimony has cost the party elections in at least two states in the past and that a national loss is inevitable unless members of the NEC listen to party loyalists and save the soul of the party.
It noted that the CECPC, as led by Governor Buni, had performed creditably, which has left the APC UK wondering why the committee was not allowed more time to complete the good work it is doing.
“It has singularly brought reconciliation to several state chapters, and we are confident that he makes factional politics a thing of the past when his committee is given more time to restore sanity to the party”, the statement added.
We are worried that, because of the stage of our socio-political evolution, disaffection and disappointment would make those who are worth their salt to decamp from the party even before the National Convention holds. The signs are glaring that the APC cannot survive such large-scale defections.
The party in the UK and other stakeholders are therefore calling and appealing on the NEC and the CECPC to harken to the voice of reason and postpone the convention while focusing on the much-needed fence-mending that will see the party to retaining power in 2023.
The APC government of President Muhammadu Buhari has too many good things going for Nigeria and Nigerians that require continuity for which the party must retain the power to continue building the Nigeria of our dreams”, it stressed.